Something has to change” thought the queen. “The most skilled tradesmen are stuck in the mud to get firewoodMartijn van Bommel, ISSO (Netherlands)


Once upon a time

  • The protagonist and the situation:

Once upon a time, long, long ago, Queen Crystal ruled the ‘Land of Glass’. The land was large, rich and prosperous, but not all was well. The land was running out of resources, and its citizens had to work too hard to be able to provide everyone with the food and housing they needed.

Then one day

So the Queen called on Knight Jan to gather all the strong, smart and skilled workers they had and re-train them into bricklayers, seamstress and heater-craftsmen. So in the early morning, the Knight went to the market square, where the workers gathered to divide the work and stuck up on supplies.

Knight Jan prepared a speech to announce that he will build a school and re-train the craftsmen, so that all will be well. However, this idea was not met with enthusiasm; it was met with great resistance. The people on the market square told the Knight that building a school is not allowed, that the blacksmith can close shop now, that the contracts for firewood have just been renewed and the message comes too late… He was confronted with many reasons why the school for re-training could not be organised.

While speaking to the Innkeeper that night, Knight Jan came up with a solution. He now understood that he needed to talk to the people involved. He went to talk to them and listen to them, and tried to come up with solutions. The Queen’s mission took one full year instead of a week, but the land slowly changed and became more prosperous than ever.

The moral

In this story, Knight Jan represents the consortium of the BUS League project, the Land of Glass represents the European Union, and the marketplace represents DIY-stores. During BUSLeague, ISSO wants to collaborate with a Dutch DIY-store to guide craftsmen to relevant training for the energy transition, but ideas are often met with setbacks, for example because of regulations, time restraints, and existing plans.

The moral of the story is: Don’t give up! Sometimes, setting up initiatives and pilots in collaboration with partners within the project and with external partners is difficult, and there are processes that slow your work down and make things more difficult. But don’t give up: Pay attention to what other people’s and organisation’s interests are, and try to listen to them. Try to walk together with the difficult processes, instead of fighting them. If you do this, you will be surprised by the positive things that emerge.

Martijn van Bommel Hoyne

Project Leader, ISSO (The Netherlands)

Martijn studied structural engineering and pedagogy. After graduating, he started working as a trainer and course developer. Here, he gained a lot of experience with different working methods and translating abstract goals of construction companies into a programme that appeals to practical people.